British poet Edwin Brock, who died in 1997, is best known for his poem:
5 Ways to Kill a Man
“There are many cumbersome ways to kill a man.
You can make him carry a plank of wood
to the top of a hill and nail him to it. ..
Or you can take a length of steel,…
and attempt to pierce the metal cage he wears….
…, you may, if the wind
allows, blow gas at him.
In an age of aeroplanes, you may fly
miles above your victim and dispose of him by
pressing one small switch. …
… Simpler, direct, and much more neat
is to see that he is living somewhere in the middle
of the twentieth century, and leave him there.”
But it’s the 21th century now. This poem should be updated.
How about describing a 6th Way to Kill a Man? Not just ‘a man’ but men , women and childen too?
What if you lock them up, en masse, in very unsanitary conditions and look the other way when Covid-19 cases arise?
Gaza has been labelled for some time an ‘open air prison’, a misleading word really. Prison, in our understanding , isn’t a place where people are born and remain for the rest of their lives. Prison isn’t a place where affordable water is undrinkable, where clinics , schools, farms, fishing boats are deliberately destroyed, where freedom flotillas bringing badly needed medical aid are denied entry, where children, severely traumatised having seen so much death and destruction, wonder if they will be the next to die.
Covid-19 is in Gaza now.
Gaza is a man-made hellhole.
Israel is to blame for its ghastly medieval siege but the West is guilty too.
Silence is complicity.
New Zealand is highly respected internationally. If New Zealand openly promoted foreign policies based on humanitarian norms, openly demanded that the siege on Gaza be lifted, activists around the world would likely be emboldened to bring pressure on their own governments to follow suit.
WHERE IS HUMANITY?
Lois Griffiths is a human rights activist.